Application of InSAR and GIS techniques to ground subsidence assessment in the Nobi Plain, Central Japan

Sensors (Basel). 2013 Dec 31;14(1):492-509. doi: 10.3390/s140100492.


Spatial variation and temporal changes in ground subsidence over the Nobi Plain, Central Japan, are assessed using GIS techniques and ground level measurements data taken over this area since the 1970s. Notwithstanding the general slowing trend observed in ground subsidence over the plains, we have detected ground rise at some locations, more likely due to the ground expansion because of recovering groundwater levels and the tilting of the Nobi land mass. The problem of non-availability of upper-air meteorological information, especially the 3-dimensional water vapor distribution, during the JERS-1 observational period (1992-1998) was solved by applying the AWC (analog weather charts) method onto the high-precision GPV-MSM (Grid Point Value of Meso-Scale Model) water-vapor data to find the latter's matching meteorological data. From the selected JERS-1 interferometry pair and the matching GPV-MSM meteorological data, the atmospheric path delay generated by water vapor inhomogeneity was then quantitatively evaluated. A highly uniform spatial distribution of the atmospheric delay, with a maximum deviation of approximately 38 mm in its horizontal distribution was found over the Plain. This confirms the effectiveness of using GPV-MSM data for SAR differential interferometric analysis, and sheds thus some new light on the possibility of improving InSAR analysis results for land subsidence applications.